There are a lot of ways to make the much loved Italian-American dish “Parm”. Whether you’re favorite is chicken, veal, eggplant, or another veggie, there are also a lot of ways to mess up this near perfect platter of delicious red sauce, cheese, and lightly fried goodness. Here is my fail-proof, perfectly fried, and never overdone, parm, done 3 ways.
- 2 1/2 cups Simple Tomato Sauce
- 4 large Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, 4-7 pieces of Veal Scallopine (depending on the size, I usually like to make an additional 2-3), or 2 large Eggplants
- 2 cups high quality flour
- 2 large eggs
- High quality bread crumbs
- Shredded Parmesan Cheese
- Dried Italian seasonings
- Mozzarella Cheese (shredded or thinly sliced)
- Additional Italian melting cheeses of your choice
- Make Ahead: Homemade Simple Tomato Sauce of your choice. I love this simple recipe that goes well with meats, veggies, and plain pasta. Make it in a batch and freeze some for future easy to make mid week meals.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Always begin with a proper parm mixture. Prep 3 bowls with the following ingredients:
- Flour: 2 Cups High quality flour
- Egg Wash: 2 large eggs + 1 tsp. water + 1 tsp. salt. Whisk together until it looks like you’re making scrambled eggs.
- Dry Parm Mixture: 1 cup high quality bread crumbs, 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, 2 tsp. salt, 2 tsp. dried Italian seasoning
- Pound your meat until 1/2″ thin or as thin as you can evenly pound it. Ask your butcher to prepare veal scallopine when picking up meat to skip this step. OR if making a veggie parm, such as an eggplant parm, cut into 1″ thick slices so that they are not too thin but will cook through quickly.
- Dredge both sides of your meat or veggie into the flour, then transfer into the egg wash, and then finish in the Dry Parm Mixture. TIP: always use one hand for the flour and dry mixture bowls and the other hand for the wet egg mixture. Do not use both hands in every bowl or things will get messy.
- Reserve the prepared meat or veggie on a baking sheet that is lined with the parchment paper.
- Place the baking sheet in the refrigerate for 30 minutes. This allows the crust to more securely form around meat/veggie.
- Prepare a separate baking sheet with parchment paper or an oven safe large baking dish to place the browned meat/veggie on.
- Heat a cast iron skillet with 1 1/2 Tbsp. vegetable oil or olive oil until very hot. Add in the pieces of meat/veggie 1 or 2 at a time so they are able to brown nicely on both sides. Approx. 1-2 minutes per side.
- Place onto the clean baking sheet. Repeat until all of the pieces have been browned.
- Have the pre-made sauce ready in a bowl. Always taste and season being putting onto the meat. Prepare the cheeses to top the parm. This can be done up until 1 hr. ahead of time and then finished right before serving.
- When ready to serve, top the meat/veggie with the sauce and then the cheeses of your choice. Bake according to the following times:
- Veal: turn oven to HIGH BROIL or very high heat. Place in oven and bake for 1-2 minutes until cheese is melted and starting to brown. Watch carefully, do not allow to overcook.
- Chicken: Bake at 375F for 15-20 minutes until cooked through and the cheese has melted on top.
- Veggie: Bake at 375F for 10 minutes until cheese has melted on top and begins to brown.
- Serve with any of my favorite pastas, found here, and a simple salad.